Doctors can’t pressure you to have babies too soon - Los Angeles Post-ExaminerLos Angeles Post-Examiner

Doctors can’t pressure you to have babies too soon

So, I love my gynecologist. Dr B. is sweet, caring, doesn’t rush you, and is overall a good doctor. I’ve been seeing her for at least 8 years, and I know she doesn’t mean to make me feel terrible every time I walk into her office. But she does, because of two things: she tells me I should lose weight, and she pressures me into getting knocked up.

My most recent appointment with her was no different. Even though she had some good news for me (“Hey, they changed the pap smear laws! Now you only have to get one every three years as long as the first one is negative for anomalies!”) she also laid down the law like never before. Here’s just a snippet:

Dr B: So … when are we having a baby?

Me: I don’t know about you, but I’m not planning on having one any time in the near future.
Dr B: Ohhhhhh why not? We need babies! And you are getting to that age…
Me: Well my boyfriend and I aren’t ready for one right now, and to tell you the truth we kind of like doing whatever we want all the time so, probably not for a few years.
Dr B: (pouts) Well, OK.
Me: I do want to switch my birth control though.
Dr B: (brightens) Do you want to go off of it completely?!
Me: No…

Two things disturb me about this conversation: the use of the pronoun “we” (like she and I are both going to carry the baby) and the use of the verb “need” (why do they NEED babies? What the heck are they doing with them?) I started imagining Dr B. in her office, happily pasting a bright red sticker on each 30 years or older patient chart to remind her to start bugging them about having a child.

I’ve been feeling the pressure lately about baby-making, and not just from my doctor. For those readers who follow me on a regular basis, you may remember I wrote a blog a few weeks ago about my cousin asking me when my boyfriend and I were going to have a baby. Surprisingly, my mother has been super good about not pressuring me about it, although I know inside she is dying for a grandchild. Awesome’s parents are also anticipating grandchildren but aren’t pressuring us except for the rare comment or two about how they want to take our child every summer for quality time (they live in Florida).

I never thought that entering my third decade of life would bring such frantic conversations about kids. Some days I can’t even believe I am 30. Not that 30 is old, it’s just that sometimes I still feel like I did in my early 20s, wanting to drink my face off at Friday happy hour and not caring about the hangover the next day. Getting pregnant is not even a blip on my radar right now, I am sorry to admit to my family and doctor.

The whole appointment left me feeling kind of bad about myself. At least I have a serious boyfriend to go home to. What about the single 30-somethings out there? Most of the time I enjoyed being single but there were some days where my loneliness threatened to engulf me. Could you imagine how I would have felt if I was having one of those days and then got the baby-time speech from Dr B.? I probably would have jumped off a cliff.

All kidding aside, I do want to have kids someday, and I will probably put out an emergency broadcast once we decide to start trying. But for now, I’m not getting knocked up for my gynecologist – no matter how much I like her.

 


About the author

Emily Campbell

Emily Campbell is a perpetually single, 20-something girl-around-town who loves Shakespeare, old movies, Natty Boh, and of course, long walks on the beach. A sales manager by day and freelance writer by night, she was recently forced into a life of involuntary celibacy when her last relationship fizzled out over a text message. She’s tired of settling for second - or tenth - best, and she’s ready to find Mr. Right. Or, Mr. Nearly Right. No one’s perfect…which she has learned the hard (but hilarious) way. Contact the author.
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